While it’s taken me more time than I care to admit getting the rest of my European Adventure series ready for you, it’s finally here. I know it comes at an unfortunate time in the world, when travel is literally at a stand still. But, what everyone can do is research and plan! Fingers (and toes) crossed that maybe later this year, or at the latest next year, our society will be back to normal (whatever that may be) and we will all be able to be back on the road, or a plane or a train, to wherever it is our hearts have dreamed of going. One place that you can start dreaming about now is Burano, Italy.
Burano is located in the Northern Lagoon of Venice, only a few miles from the heart of the city, accessible of course only by boat. It’s the perfect day trip from Venice, and allows you to escape the normal hustle and bustle happening in the city. [I recommend taking the vaporetto -Italian for bus- to get here. Just make sure you take a semi-direct line, so it doesn’t take hours to get to.] As your boat approaches the island, off in the distance you will see their dramatically leaning bell tower, and right in front of you will be hundreds and hundreds of the most bright, colorful homes. You will have no doubt you have arrived at the right stop.
Arriving to Burano is like getting a big dose of HAPPY pills. As you step off the boat you will instantly be filled with cheer. Like Venice, there are still plenty of canals in this small fishing village, and lots of quaint bridges to gaze out and observe the locals from. If you wonder why the houses are so colorful, legend has it that fishermen started painting them bright colors so they could easily distinguish their own homes when arriving back from fishing at dawn.
While Burano is most well known for it’s rainbow rows of homes, they have another amazing attribute too – they create gorgeous lace from hand, and have been doing it for hundreds of years. In fact, they even had a school at one time dedicated to teaching the art of lace making to young girls. In the Lidia Merletti d’Arte shop and museum you can learn about the history, glimpse vintage lace pieces and you can still catch a few of the schools graduates, hands busy at work, creating masterpieces. I should add that these grads are now well past 80! Another great shop for viewing lace artisans at work is Emilia Burano. While Lace making is sadly becoming a lost art, seeing it celebrated here is really wonderful. I hope with all of the shops they have selling clothing, home goods and more, that lace making will be able to linger on long after the bright colors of the homes have started to dull.
Tips for Making the Most of your Visit to Burano:
- If you plan to visit in summer, make sure to head to the island early to avoid the mid-day heat wave.
- Look at a vaporetto map and choose a stop near your hotel that goes directly to the Northern Lagoon. It will still make a few stops, but you’ll avoid the time of making your way around all of Venice first. One stop you will for sure come across will be Murano (yes that Murano, known for beautiful glass). You’ll want to stop here too!
- Take a stroll around all of Burano, not just the main street. This is the best way to see how the locals truly live, find off beat shops and see even more colorful homes.
- Spend time browsing the shops to admire the lace pieces and other fun artwork. Don’t forget to buy a memento or two to bring home! Remember, lace is easier to transport than glass, so if you need gifts for loved ones back home, this is the place to get them.
- Carry a water bottle to stay hydrated.
- Eat like a local. Find a hidden restaurant off one of the canals and enjoy a fresh, home cooked meal, with great views. Bonus – food is very affordable here! I really liked Bar Trexento.
- Know a few basic Italian words. You aren’t in Venice where there are more English speakers, so knowing some key phrases will really help you out. Plus, locals always appreciate it when tourists take time to learn their language, even if it’s only a few words!
- Get a small travel book with maps to take with you. It will give you inspiration on what to see, where to shop, what to eat and much more. I prefer DK Eyewitness travel books and used this one for this part of my trip.
Start daydreaming today, be proactive in planning and then whenever you can get back to traveling, you’ll be ready to roll, right into Burano, Italy.
For additional European vacation inspiration and ideas check out parts 1-4 of my European Adventure series.
Signed with Style,
Save the photos below to Pinterest for future inspiration!